July 15, 2022 – Volume 21, Issue 28


A Live Conversation on A New Vision for the Future of Childcare


Leaders in child care will join Chi Offomah, care constellation program lead at IDEO.org, and Krista Scott, senior program officer at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, today (July 15) at 1 p.m. EDT for a conversation on reimagining the future of childcare in the U.S. The hour-long conversation will focus on using community organizing and coalition building to ensure that care systems support a diversity of families. The goal is to change current systems and create new ones to better meet the needs of all stakeholders. Register here.

Sleep Duration and Kindergarten Adjustment

Summer break is a key time to develop children’s school-year sleep habits. New research found that young children who consistently slept 10 or more hours per night transitioned better to kindergarten than children with less regular sleeping patterns. That consistent block of sleep was particularly important the summer before kindergarten: children in this category were significantly more likely to maintain a solid sleep pattern throughout the kindergarten year. Sleep hygiene throughout kindergarten was also positively related to kindergartners’ socio-emotional, learning engagement and academic outcomes. “Findings suggest that family-based interventions to establish consistent patterns of sufficient nighttime sleep should begin well before (e.g., 5–6 months) the start of K,” the researchers concluded. Read the full study here.


Leveraging Federal Pandemic Relief Funds to Enhance and Expand Early Childhood Programs

As a panelist at the virtual 2022 Office of Special Education Programs’ Leadership and Project Directors’ Conference, NIEER Assistant Research Professor Allison Friedman-Krauss will discuss how states and local governments are using federal pandemic relief funds to expand and enhance early childhood programs. The session, Leveraging Federal Pandemic Relief Funds to Enhance and Expand Early Childhood Programs, with co-panelists Melissa Mincic of the National Conference of State Legislatures and Bryan Klimkiewicz of the Connecticut State Department of Education, runs 1:15-2:45 p.m. EDT on July 20. Click here to register for the weeklong conference, which starts Monday.


A New Look at Teacher Interactional Quality: Profiles of Individual Teacher–Child Relationship and Classroom Teaching Quality among Head Start students


Children’s experiences in Head Start varied considerably, with children exposed to a range of interactional patterns and instruction. Researchers measured teacher-child closeness and conflict, and classroom-level instructional and emotional support. They identified child-centered experience profiles based on data for 2,114 children, finding the most common profile consisted of a positive emotional climate and low instructional support. The study was written by Katherine W. Paschall of Child Trends; Melissa A. Barnett, Xiaomin Li and Maria Belinda Vasquez of the University of Arizona; and Ann M. Mastergeorge of Texas Tech University. Access it here.

Preschool and Child-Care Expulsion: Is it Elevated for Autistic Children?


One in six children with autism had been expelled from a childcare or preschool setting, mostly for behavioral problems, a study found. “Previously-expelled children went on to experience more conflict and dependency in their current student–teacher relationships,” wrote authors Jan Blacher of the University of California, Riverside and Abbey Eisenhower of the University of Massachusetts. Children were more likely to be expelled from private than from public programs. Access the study here.


Head Start’s Impact on Long-Term School Success: Assessing Variation across Latent Classes of Family Risk


Head Start’s initial benefits for children first enrolled at age 4 largely dissipated by third grade, a study found. “While some children saw initial and sustained benefits from HS into 3rd grade, most did not, and others performed worse than the comparison group on outcomes in elementary school,” wrote Benjamin L. Bayly of The Pennsylvania State University, Brittany Rhoades Cooper of Washington State University and Kimberly A. Rhoades of New York University. Outcomes held regardless of family risk. Read the study here.


A Systematic Review of Evidence-Based Wellbeing Initiatives for Schoolteachers and Early Childhood Educators


A systematic review of 23 studies on educator well-being initiatives found that most were therapeutic interventions focused on individual stress and mental health. Most initiatives studied were found to improve teachers’ well-being. Although “the quality of evidence is modest, especially for early childhood educators,” multiple randomized trials contribute to the findings. Read the study here.